PRIVACY NOTICE - THE PROTECTION OF PERSONAL INFORMATION ACT (POPIA)

Your privacy is important to us. We strive to ensure that our use of your personal information or data is lawful, reasonable, and relevant to our business activities, with the goal of improving our services and your experience.

For us to render our student funding facilitation services we need to collect, use, share and store personal and financial information about you, in accordance with the requirements of the Protection of Personal Information Act (“POPIA”). This privacy notice aims, among other things, to inform you about how Student Hero undertakes to keep your personal information secure when providing you with student funding facilitation services. This information includes information you share with us, information that we gather during the course of our relationship with you as client, as well as information about your marketing preferences. This notice also sets out your rights and how you may protect them.

What personal information do we collect and how?

Personal information is data that can be used to identify you. This information includes, but is not limited to names, ages, identity numbers, registration numbers, addresses and other contact details, income and payments records, financial information and banking details.

We collect your personal information in the following ways:

  • Directly from you when you complete a loan application form, whether electronically or on hard copy.

  • Indirectly from you when you interact with us electronically. When you are browsing our website, we may collect information from you, such as your internet address and server logs. All personal information is stored according to internationally accepted information security practices.

  • Directly from other sources, such as public databases, data aggregators and third parties, as well as other financial institutions, credit bureaus, fraud prevention agencies; or indirectly through your interactions with third parties.

How do we use your information?

We may, with your permission or consent if required, use personal information we collected in a number of ways, for example:

  • To identify you.

  • To provide you with student funding facilitation services.

  • To provide you with financial/credit products and services.

  • To assess your creditworthiness.

  • To detect and prevent fraud and crime.

  • To detect and prevent money laundering.

  • For audits and debt collection purposes.

  • For statistical analysis.

  • To meet our obligations under an agreement with you.

  • To comply with legislative requirements.

We may record and monitor any communications between you and us and use these recordings to verify your instructions to us, to analyse, assess and improve our services to clients, and for training and quality purposes.

We will not sell your information to third parties and will only market to you in accordance with our legal obligations and your consent to us.

We may communicate with you by post, phone, SMS, email, WhatsApp and other electronic media, including our mobile loan application services, about products that may be of interest to you or about your funding application. You may ask us to stop or start sending you marketing messages by informing us in writing, call centres or website.

It is your right to refuse to provide personal information, but you must keep in mind that this refusal may limit our ability to provide the required student funding facilitation services to you. It is important to note that Student Hero will only collect information from you that is necessary and relevant to the service or product to be provided.

No information will be collected without your prior consent or as prescribed by law. We will not use information collected about you for marketing purposes you have not consented to.

Should we make use of third-party data providers, we will ensure that such providers have obtained the required consent to share the information with Student Hero.


To whom will we disclose your information?

We will disclose your personal information to third parties only under the following circumstances:

  • We have your consent to do so.

  • We are required to do so by law.

  • It is necessary to protect our legitimate interest, your legitimate interest or the legitimate interest of a third party to whom the information is supplied.

  • It is in the public interest to do so.

  • We have to meet tax reporting requirements.

  • We are ordered to do so by a court of law.

Protecting Student Hero’s interests may sometimes require the disclosure of specific client information to third parties, for example disclosing the outcome of your funding application to the educational institution. Where required to protect the public interest, information regarding a client’s affordability may be disclosed to an educational institution.

When sharing your information with recipients in other jurisdictions, we will ensure that they adhere to similar privacy protection requirements as we do – either by law or by legal agreement.

Security

We are committed to ensuring that your information is secure. To prevent unauthorised access or disclosure, we have put in place suitable physical, electronic and managerial procedures to safeguard and secure the information we collect.

Retention

We will retain your information only for as long as we need it, given the purpose for which it was collected, or as required by law (including tax legislation) and any other statutory obligations. Your information may be retained for varying periods from the end of our relationship, depending on regulatory requirements. We will take all reasonable steps to destroy or de-identify the personal information that we hold when it is no longer required.


Cookies

We sometimes make use of cookies to personalise your repeat visits to our website and online loan applications. Cookies are very small text files that may be stored on your computer or mobile device when you visit a website, enable images or click on a link in an email.

We use cookies to identify which pages are being used. This helps us analyse data about web page traffic and improve our website to meet your needs. We only use this information for statistical analysis purposes and then the data is removed from the system.

Overall, cookies help us provide you with a better website by enabling us to monitor which pages you find useful and which you do not. A cookie in no way gives us access to your computer or any information about you, other than the data you choose to share with us.

You can choose to accept or decline cookies. Most web browsers automatically accept cookies, but you can usually modify your browser setting to decline cookies if you prefer. This may prevent you from taking full advantage of the website.

How you can access and update your personal information

Should you wish to verify the information we have about you or request an update or amendment of such information, you may:


About us

Under the auspices of the Herosphere, Student Hero and Study Loans 4U have joined our incredible forces to form South Africa’s largest student finance facilitation service, an initiative aimed to help more students to be their future self sooner. With now more than 10 years of experience, we are able to make learning about, applying or pre-qualifying for study funding from South Africa’s leading educational finance providers trouble-free, worry-free, for free.